Thursday, May 9, 2013

Before You Contact Your Association Volunteers

I’m inside my temporary home/office ... working on blogs and some client projects and proposals ... but also looking out the window at golfers on the #6 green.

It is really distracting! 

Mainly because I’d rather be out there in the sun with them!

Which got me to thinking about the difficulty association executives have connecting with their volunteer leaders.

While we association execs are thinking and breathing the association and its issues on a nearly 24-7 bases, our volunteer leaders have other things on their minds most of the time. 


I remember thinking, “Why aren’t they responding to my emails or calls?” “Why aren’t they focused on our association or professional society?”

Well, let’s look at this from their perspective as a volunteer leader ...

  • They’re committed to their company 24-7.
  • They may be facing a crisis in their company.
  • Perhaps, they are focused on a call from one of their board members or perhaps a key investor.
  • They may have back-to-back surgeries or client meetings
  • Maybe a major news story (or blog post or tweet) is breaking and they are focused on responses.

So, when we reach out to our volunteer leaders, let’s think about “where” they are and ask ourselves is this question or issue really important enough to interrupt their primary job?

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